Today, there is a plethora of pastry shops everywhere. Look to your left and you'll see a cute cupcake stand, walk ten minutes down the street and a bread bakery seemingly appears out of nowhere. Obviously, not all bakeries are the same — some are more delicious than others. In order to provide some stability in the world of desserts, I've narrowed down the top four bakeries within the vicinity of Detroit, so next time, you'll stop wandering and actually know where to go.

1. Astoria Pastry Shop

coffee, tea, beer, wine
Michelle Gu

Creating treats that range from American classics, like sugar cookies, to the European delicacies of lemon meringue pie and eclairs, the items sold at Astoria Pastry Shop are definitely individually cared for during the entire baking process. Each cookie, cupcake, and dessert is unique, which you know means that they were homemade and freshly baked. 

Because Astoria is a little on the pricier side, I would recommend visiting with your parents (or someone who is paying for you). Personally, a $5 apple dipped in caramel doesn't exactly fit in with my college student budget. On the other hand, these easy dorm room-made ones might do less damage to my debit card.

2. Achatz Handmade Pie Company

cake, chocolate, cookie
Michelle Gu

Out of all the lovely desserts in existence, I think pies may be one of my least favorite. The fruit jams just don't coincide with my taste buds. However, if the pie is from Achatz's, hand me the whole thing, and let me stuff my face with it. The fruit and pie crust just get along so nicely, like milk and cookies.

In addition to classic flavors of pie, this bakery makes Michigan-specific ones, like the Michigan 4-Berry, and it invents the always appreciated dessert mash-ups (I'm looking at you, cannoli pie). The really, really convenient thing is that you can actually order online. So, technically, you could have a giant pie soaking up space in your mini fridge by tomorrow. Or, if for some reason a giant pie doesn't seem worth the trouble, make mini ones instead.

3. Cupcake Station

cake, chocolate
Danielle Karp

Unlike the first two mentioned, Cupcake Station is more within the means of a college student's budget. On their website, they say that their cupcakes cost about the same as a cup of coffee, and they really are not lying. I went to the one in Ann Arbor several weeks ago, and each cupcake was $3, which is not bad considering how huge they are.

Share with a couple friends, and your sweet tooth craving can be cured for under a dollar. They have super awesome and one-of-a-kind flavors like Vanilla Latte and the seasonal Fall Into Pumpkin, which has seriously got me considering marrying pumpkin spice.

4. Zingerman's Bakehouse

Everyone knows that Zingerman's Delicatessen is the more well-known and savory part of the chain, but the bakehouse is their best kept secret. Not only do they sell sweet treats, but they also provide house-made breads. Oh my, I love all that carby goodness. From challah, to banana bread, to fresh rye bread, there's nothing they can't do, and I want it all. They even cater to the out-of-state students (specifically the New Yorkers) with their 'New Yorkers' which are buns with a secret pocket of slow roasted onions and poppy seeds.

This list is definitely not a good summary of all of what Metro Detroit has to offer, so I still encourage everyone to try new bakeries. However, if you haven't visited them yet, these four must be on your bucket list. They rank well above the others, and their menus change on a monthly basis, so I say, why not visit every month? It'll be the perfect excuse to skip the dining hall desserts.